Wednesday, November 2, 2011


Globalization of our food supply certainly changes things, including its safety. For one thing, everything becomes more complicated. A couple of days ago, I blogged the Turkish pine nut recall, arguing that they probably were imported from China, not Turkey, having been sent there for processing. Now we have another example of how globalization affects safety issues.

This time we have a recall of jars and cans (all sizes) of Bio Gaudiano Organic (yes, organic again) Olives Stuffed with Almonds. The U.S. importer and distributor is Pure Italian, LLC, located in Watertown, MA. But the olives come from Bio Gaudiano, which is a manufacturer and packer located in Italy. The reason for the recall is the very deadly Clostridium botulinum bacterium.

Just to round out the global picture, the U.S. alert about this problem was triggered by two people being diagnosed with botulism after eating these olives. No, not in the U.S. In Finland.

Botulism bacteria can cause life-threatening illness or death. It used to be a common threat in canned or jarred foods years ago before the process was improved and better controls were established.

Symptoms of botulism are: general weakness, dizziness, double-vision and trouble with speaking or swallowing. Other symptoms can be difficulty in breathing, weakness of other muscles, abdominal swelling and constipation. In other words, it is not like a typical case of food poisoning.

If you have bought these olives (as I have in the past), be sure to check. The Lot no. is H2510X and the expiration 09/2012.

To your good health,

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